1. Home
  2. Health & Lifestyle

Lean Meat for Health: Unravelling the Health Benefits, Pitfalls, and Food Hygiene

Lean meat offers health benefits as a protein-rich source with lower fat content, promoting muscle growth and repair; however, overconsumption may lead to excessive cholesterol intake and increased cancer risk, necessitating proper food hygiene practices to prevent foodborne illnesses.

Shivangi Rai
Lean meats contain moderate levels of purines which are beneficial for the body. (Image Courtesy- Freepik)
Lean meats contain moderate levels of purines which are beneficial for the body. (Image Courtesy- Freepik)

Lean meat is considered a favourable protein source due to its reduced fat and calorie content.

It is generally regarded as a safe option for protein consumption; however, there have been concerns raised about antibiotic use in poultry farms.

What is Lean Meat?

Lean meats are characterized by their lower fat content, which includes skinless chicken, turkey, and red meat like pork chops with the fat trimmed off.

The fat content in a pork chop is primarily derived from its skin, contributing to about two-thirds of the total fat content, while in chicken, the skin can account for up to 80 per cent of its fat content.

Lean Meat: What are its Health Benefits?

Lean meats are highly regarded as an excellent protein source with the added benefit of being lower in calories compared to non-lean meats. They are particularly popular among individuals who follow low-calorie and low-fat diets.

Poultry, a type of lean meat, is notably rich in essential nutrients such as selenium, vitamins B3, and B6, along with choline. Selenium is known for its antioxidant properties, effectively safeguarding cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Additionally, it plays a crucial role in supporting the immune system.

Vitamins B3 and B6 found in poultry aid the body in converting carbohydrates into glucose, providing a vital energy source. Vitamin B3, also referred to as niacin, contributes to the production of stress and sex hormones, promoting hormonal balance within the body. Choline, on the other hand, plays a significant role in maintaining healthy nerve function and possesses anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation.

Lean Meat: What are its Drawbacks?

Poultry farming often involves the use of antibiotics, which has been associated with the emergence of antibiotic-resistant infections in humans, including urinary tract infections. To address this concern, regulations have been implemented to limit the transfer of antibiotics to consumers through poultry consumption. However, those who remain cautious may prefer to opt for organic poultry or poultry labelled as antibiotic-free.

Lean meats, including poultry, contain moderate levels of purines, which are beneficial for the body. However, individuals who are prone to gout should be aware that excessive purine intake can elevate the risk of gout flare-ups. Therefore, it's important for susceptible individuals to consume lean meats in moderation and consider other dietary choices to manage their condition effectively.

Lean Meat and Food Hygiene

Similar to handling and cooking other types of meats, it is essential to be cautious when preparing poultry. The main risks arise from undercooking the meat and improper handling or storage. To minimize these risks:

1. Always make sure to thoroughly wash your hands and utensils after they come into contact with raw meat.

2. Ensure that meat is cooked completely before consumption to eliminate any harmful bacteria.

3. Avoid reheating cooked meat more than once to prevent potential bacterial growth.

By following these guidelines, you can significantly reduce the risk of foodborne illnesses associated with meat consumption.

Magnoliaceous Quiz: Take a Quiz on National Mango Day Take a quiz
Share your comments
FactCheck in Agriculture Project

Subscribe to our Newsletter. You choose the topics of your interest and we'll send you handpicked news and latest updates based on your choice.

Subscribe Newsletters